Contributed YouTube embed, blog post by John Hoff
A regular reader thought this might be a matter too small for my blog, to which I respond: no, this is EXACTLY the kind of thing this blog focuses upon. Can anybody identify these juveniles in the videotape above before they transition from minor property crimes to a wasted life of violent felonies?
This surveillance camera video, which was uploaded to YouTube by Northsider John Fena, at about the 59 second point begins to show a couple of juveniles who...
...throw what appear to be rocks at the window and (presumably) the camera visible in the window.
John Fena, as many regular readers know, has been a force for good in the neighborhood for a number of years. In one instance Fena and his partner pulled off a renovation described by many as "miraculous," click here. Fena has also paid a terrible price for plunking himself down in the middle of a neighborhood in transition from urban blight to urban utopia. His innocent little dog was killed by a pit bull, and both Fena and his partner were injured in an unsuccessful (but brave and noble!) attempt to rescue their pet. The owners of the aggressor pit bull were both difficult to locate and pointless to sue, so in that sense...
They got away with it.
But that results in the kind of "positive anger" which can drive a Northside neighborhood revitalizer toward ever greater acts of doing good.
So now about that video...
The property in question (Fena didn't give me the precise address, and I didn't ask) is in the Jordan Neighborhood and the property had been a big piece of blight for a long time, until renovation activity by Fena, et al. But since April there have been 6 incidents of vandalism, apparently by the same kids who are (Fena estimates) roughly 10 to 12 years old. (JNS blog estimates the kids to be 14 to 16 and sadly undernourished)
The latest incident was just last night, when a truck window was busted. The video above is from a month ago, however.
Fena says he gave the video to the police in the Fourth Precinct, but like many crimes which don't involve a dead body in the streets of North Minneapolis, the investigation (if any) doesn't seem to be getting anywhere. This is where I insert commentary like "God bless MPD" and mention these police are overworked, understaffed, and if there is fault it lies with political leaders, not the police.
But the frustration of decent people in the neighborhood is both understandable and palpable. John Fena has a lot more to say, I believe, but he's free to add his comments or send me further information. In fact, I wish John Fena would become one of my new crop of guest authors and spend some time showing off that renovation, hint hint.
John Fena has done a lot for this neighborhood. As busy as this blogger gets (and, oh, I get busy) today I jump to my well-worn keyboard and I say I will not leave John Fena twisting in the wind, asking for help and getting none. Somebody knows who these juveniles are and while I haven't heard anything about a REWARD, no not yet, for information leading to their arrest...
Let the word go forth. Decent people are trying to figure out who is this little gang of vandals trying to stop John Fena's renovation of that house in the Jordan Neighborhood.
And that renovation will NOT be stopped.